CSB Vancouver’s Famous Employee Appreciation BBQ and Beverage ‘Swag’ Raffle!

Just over a week ago on Friday the 8th, Craig Stein Beverage Vancouver once again celebrated it’s famous employee appreciation BBQ.


The beverage swag giveaway did not disappoint. 

What do people love? Socializing, good food and drink, leaving early on a Friday, FREE STUFF?


Well for a true employee appreciation BBQ you’ve got to give the people what they want, and once a year we load up a truck with swag, layout some tables and feed the masses with BBQ, beer, and raffle off the accumulation of a years worth of beverage themed collectibles.

People start filtering in...
Festivities are up and running!

There was talk the week prior of having to move the BBQ to another date on account of the smoke rolling over from the brutal gorge fires we’ve seen this year, but despite natural threats of rain, smoke and wind, things were able to run as planned in an overcast, but delightfully warm setting.


This pleased owner Craig Stein as the great misty PNW more often than not doesn’t create weather scenario’s that preclude a tent-less event.


During set up I couldn’t help but point out the auspicious September weather,


“Things look they’re going pretty well, looks like the weather is going to stay this way.”


To which Craig replied confidently,


“Exactly! No more freaking tents.”

As per annual tradition, Craig kept the BBQ and Raffle moving right along as the annual BBQ emcee, announcing winners, directing traffic flow and providing tandem comedic relief with the night’s “Vanna White,” Gary Hall, our Retail DM Supervisor.

Thanks to Pam and Sherri for organizing everything!

We also celebrated the retirement of two of our long term employees Bill Fortino, and Jay Roberts, who have been salesmen at CSB for a combined 32 years.


Thanks for everything you guys!


Believe it or not, many of our employees have been here even longer. There are individuals in almost every department in the 20, 22, 24,+ year range which includes most of the management team.


Robert Eliuk our sign shop/graphic designer have been with the company since it was founded in 1990, 27 years ago and wouldn’t have had it any other way.


A true testament to the great culture that Craig and the rest of the management team have worked hard to instill. Not all work environments are created equal, and it’s in this day and age of startup’s and compulsive job switching that it’s important to remember that it’s the people that make any job, team, and company great. All the way from the top on down.

Much of this wouldn’t be possible without the generous support of our excellent suppliers.

There was no shortage of excellent prizes during the raffle.


In addition to hundreds of collectible coolers of all sizes, shapes, and features, we had electric turntables, inflatables, chairs, mini fridges, backpacks, firepits etc. as the bulk of the loot.


On the table we had thousands of dollars of gift cards to be raffled off, from Fred Meyers, Sears, Walmart, and other stores, to big ticket dinners like Beaches Restaurant. Some going for $50, $100 or more.


One of the bigger packages was an all inclusive stay at the Heathman Lodge, that include lodging, dinner, champagne and more, which was snagged by one of out long time salesmen.


Then there were the big grand prizes. 


In addition to Rockstar snowboards, skateboards, and the aforementioned hotel/dinner packages, we also gave away 4 custom cruiser bikes, concert tickets, and a Rockstar guitar.


There was so much to give away in fact, that many people won twice!

A big thanks to Jazzy John for catering and providing the incredibly satisfying BBQ spread. Pulled pork, chicken, baked beans, were all there in full effect with more than everyone could possibly eat.


(For more info about this great local BBQ joint click here.)

Of all the winners, I was the most fortunate (your humble narrator), winning not one, but two of the coveted grand prizes and taking home a famous New Belgium branded Detroit Bikes cruiser. Coming in at ~$1000 as a notoriously cool collectors item you can find floating around on Ebay from time to time. (Not that I have an intentions of doing anything but riding it until it rusts out from under me. Where else do you find a bike like that?)


And… a  Musicman Rockstar guitar, which is undeniably cool, and plays great! (Source: I’m a musician!)

When everything was said and done there wasn’t an unhappy face in the crowd, it was nothing but laughter, and good vibes. And that’s what it’s all about! A reminder that we’re not just faceless people who clock in and out, but individuals who work hard for a company that works for them.


Author: Keegan Cantrell